ESCAMBIA COUNTY, Fla. (WKRG) — “Operation Brownsville” is a collaboration between the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, the Pensacola Police Department and community groups aimed at reducing crime in the neighborhood.

The initiative came from the Sheriff Office’s gun violence roundtable discussion and started just a few weeks ago.

As part of the operation, there’s been increased law enforcement in the area, events from local nonprofits like drug awareness seminars have been held and efforts from both community code enforcement and Florida Power & Light.

“What makes the area attractive to criminals, to drug dealers, a lot of times is dilapidated homes or businesses, overgrown lots, poor lighting,” said Mike Wood of the Pensacola Police Department. “So we call in the agencies that are responsible for that. We can take care of the narcotics on the street but we have Florida Power and Light with the lighting, we have code enforcement with the dilapidated buildings and overgrown lots. When you put all that together that’s how you eliminate problems.” 

According to the PPD, officers made six arrests last week as part of the operation. Mayor D.C. Reeves also announced at Tuesday’s news conference, that there were currently nine code enforcement cases pending.

PPD says the reaction from the Brownsville community has been positive.

“We couldn’t do this without the members of the community,” said Wood. “If they did not want us there or did not like the idea that we were there, we would just be spinning our wheels. But nobody cares more about a community than the people that live there.” 

Escambia County will also host a neighborhood cleanup Friday for the Brownsville North Community.